Hydraulics & Waterways


394023 - Hurricane-Induced Flood Control Challenges in the Upper Kissimmee Basin, Florida

Wednesday, June 6
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Greenway CD

The Upper Kissimmee Basin (UKB), a 1596 square miles watershed in central-north Florida, encompasses more than two dozen lakes and their tributary streams. In the 1960s, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) designed and built the Central and Southern Florida (C&SF) Project. This project, through construction and operations of canals and water control structures, extensively altered the native hydrology of the basin. Today the UKB is a highly altered system, which creates unique challenges for present-day water management, including flood control. In September 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall in south Florida, drenching the UKB with 8 to 12 inches of rainfall. This led to high water levels in the basin, and sharp rises in Lakes stages.
This study focuses on two uncontrolled creeks in the UKB: Shingle and Boggy Creeks. The former is a major inflow to Lake Tohopekaliga (Toho), south of Orlando, and the latter discharges runoff into East Lake Toho, north of the City of St Cloud. Comparisons of resulting stage hydrographs from Irma and from another event of similar rainfall magnitude from October 2011 revealed that both creeks were much flashier after Hurricane Irma, resulting in a higher peak runoff and shorter time to peak. Further investigation is needed to assess how existing structures and operations in the UKB can be adapted to address evolving flood control challenges in the UKB.

Seyed Hajimirzaie, PhD, PE, PH

South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD)

Seyed (“Haji”) Hajimirzaie, Ph.D., P.E., P.H
South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD)
Applied Hydraulics Section

I have received my Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Iowa, IIHR—Hydroscience & Engineering (IIHR). My Ph.D. dissertation was an interdisciplinary study with components of environmental hydraulics as well as sediment transport. Currently, I am a full time employee at Hydrology and Hydraulics (H&H) Bureau at South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD).
Special Fields of Knowledge:
• Experimental Fluid Dynamics, Environmental Hydraulics, River Restoration and Sustainability, Image-Based Flow Velocimetry, Unsteady Flows, Vortex-Dominated Flows, River Hydraulics, Hydraulic Structures, Sediment Transport


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Zhiming Chen

Principal Engineer
South Florida Water Management District

Dr.Zhiming Chen obtained his B.S. and M.S. degrees in 1983 and 1986 respectively from Department of Hydrology and Water Resources, Hohai University, China. After graduating from Hohai University, he worked at Nanjing Institute of Hydrology and Water Resources, Ministry of Water Resources of China. He got Ph.D. from Iowa Insitute of hydraulc Research, University of Iowa in 2002. Currently, he is principal engineer at Bereau of Operations, Engineering, and Construction, South Florida Water Management District, .


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Matahel Ansar

South Florida Water Management District

Since June 2014, Dr. Matahel Ansar is a Section Administrator (Section Chief) for the Applied Hydraulics Section at the South Florida Water Management District, West Palm Beach, Florida. In this position, he provides overall management of the Section, and technical leadership to about twenty three engineers involved in hydraulic design, flow computations at water control structures, flood risk analysis, and investigations of sea level rise challenges in South Florida. This Section also provides operational hydraulics support to the District’s water control center.

Dr. Ansar has a Ph.D. (’97) and an M.S. (’93) in Civil and Environmental Engineering, specializing in Hydraulics from the University of Iowa. He also holds a Bachelor of Science (’91) in Water Resources Management from Central State University, Wilberforce, Ohio. He has about forty five technical publications in the form of refereed journal papers and discussions, conference papers, theses, and technical reports. He is also the past winner of several awards, including the Merit Award from the Arizona Consulting Engineers Association (1998); the Best Discussion Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers Journal of Irrigation and Drainage Engineering (2003); the South Florida Water Management District Leadership Award (2006), the Grand Award from the Florida Engineering Society (2009), and a National Recognition Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies (2009). Dr. Ansar has testified, as a Hydrology and Hydraulics Expert Witness, in several complex litigations. He is also a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of Florida.


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394023 - Hurricane-Induced Flood Control Challenges in the Upper Kissimmee Basin, Florida

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